Stepping Stones China

English Teacher to Migrant & Left-behind Children

Shanghai, China show on map

Non-profit | Stepping Stones China

Volunteers will teach a minimum of once a week at migrant schools in and around Shanghai or at rural schools for left-behind children.

In our Classroom Teaching Programs, more than 200 Stepping Stones volunteers teach oral English in a traditional classroom setting. These classes take place every day each week from Monday to Sunday, and reach about 5,000 students each term in more than 20 migrant schools and community centers spread out around Shanghai and the surrounding area.

Program Objectives:

  • To increase students’ interest and confidence in English;
  • To help students improving their English test scores;

Program Details:

The Classroom Teaching Programs run from the middle of September through the middle of December and from mid-February until mid-June. All our volunteers must attend one of our Orientation and Training (O&T) sessions before they can start teaching in our programs.

Time commitment is usually half a day per week (including commute and lesson prep. time) and a min. of one school term (3-4 months). This depends on each volunteer's situation and can be tailored. 

At our school sites: Volunteers head to a school for migrants during the weekdays (a morning or afternoon) to teach an oral English class which helps the children to review what they have learned in their regular English lessons. Our volunteers are provided with lesson plans which follow the school’s English curriculum (textbooks). As the class sizes are quite large our volunteers are always partnered together with one or two other volunteers to co-teach. The volunteers normally teach 2 different classes of the same grade that are around 35-40 minutes long.

At our community center sites: At our community center sites, volunteers will teach two consecutive 40 minute lessons to the same class of students with a ten minute break in the middle. Class sizes are usually smaller than at the schools and the lessons normally take place on weekends. Sometimes there can be more than one grade level of students in the classroom.  Similar to the school sites, the focus is on practicing oral English, our volunteers have access to lesson plans which follow the local English curriculum, and volunteers are always partnered together with one or two other volunteers to co-teach.

Free-time activities

Shanghai is an exciting modern city with lots to see. Explore the Bund or walk around the French Concession. Try delicious Chinese food. There are also easy day trips volunteers can take to cities and rural areas not more than 1-2 hours outside the city.


Program Requirements

In order to join the program you need to be at least 18 years old on the program start date. There might be exemptions if you can provide the permission of your legal guardian(s) or if your are accompanied by your parents.
Language Skills
You need to speak English (fluently)
Education Requirements
at High School level
Nationality Restrictions
No restrictions. Helping hands from all over the world are welcome.
Time Commitment
Your helping hand will be required on Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday, Saturday and Sunday

Suitable for


Included Services

Extra security layer by Volunteer World
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Quality Assurance
High ethical standards & transparent social impact
Flex Option
Change your reservation at no extra costs
Refund Guarantee
We refund your fees if Stepping Stones China cancels your trip
Support & Mediation
We cover your back no matter what happens
Our services are free of charge!
All program fees are charged directly by Stepping Stones China.

Before your journey

Profound consulting and ongoing support (free)
Stepping Stones China (your host organization) provides consulting and is keen to answer all your questions. Once you reserved your spot, you will receive the contact details of your volunteer project.
Online preparation course (optional, from $49)
Prepare yourself and become a confident and well informed traveler. Global Travel Academy takes you on a journey before you leave home, helping you to become one of the world's greatest travelers. Our trusted partner for online learning offers courses in "International Volunteering", "Travel Health & Safety" and "Travel Safety Abroad".

On-site services

Internet Access
Good access at the project site
What's NOT included?
Visa, flights, travel insurance or vaccinations are NOT included in the program fees. An airport pickup isn't included within the program fees either. Please arrange your own accommodation. Food, snacks or beverages are at extra costs.
Flight Tickets
The nearest airport is Shanghai Hongqiao International Airport (SHA) in Shanghai. We assist you to find cheap flights to China.
Travel Insurance
Going abroad is an adventure and it is always best to be prepared. Sudden illness or injury, cancellation or theft - a travel insurance for China provides security and is a plus to have.
If you are intending to volunteer in China you should seek medical advice before starting your social journey. Check your required vaccinations for China.
  Asia Eastern Asia China  Shanghai, Shanghai

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